South East security guards, bouncers and their employers, are being placed under the spotlight after HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) announced the creation of a new taskforce to target tax evaders in these industries.
National audit, tax and advisory firm Crowe Clark Whitehall, which has offices in Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells, has warned security firms that may have unreported profits to make a voluntary disclosure to HMRC as soon as possible.
Simon Crookston, Tax Director at Crowe Clark Whitehall, said: “The Chancellor is eager to boost Treasury coffers, and HMRC is targeting industries where there might be a temptation to not fully declare their earnings or overstate their outgoings.
“In our experience, failure to voluntarily disclose will only lead to an even bigger problem, especially as penalties for deliberate concealment can be up to 100% of the tax due. Our Kent tax team has considerable experience of working with HMRC to reach settlement agreements for our clients.”
HMRC has announced that it expects to recover £10 million from the private security industry after successfully collecting more than £90 million through the taskforces launched during 2011-12. HMRC has also predicted that it expects to recover more than £90 million per year from taskforces targeting businesses and individuals trying to avoid paying tax in London, the South East and elsewhere in the UK over the next three years.
Announcing the new taskforce, HMRC’s Jennie Granger, Director General of Enforcement and Compliance, said: “If you have declared all your income, you have nothing to worry about. But, if you haven’t, we will find you, investigate you and not only could you face a heavy fine, but a criminal prosecution as well.”